P&O Cruises has cut the first pieces of steel for its new LNG-powered Excel-class cruise ship Arvia at the Meyer Werft shipyard in Papenburg, Germany.
At more than 180,000-gross tons, and carrying 5,200 passengers, Arvia will be a sister ship to Iona, delivered in 2020, but P&O have hinted she will feature a number of new amenities.
“The steel cutting marks an extraordinary milestone for the future of P&O Cruises,” said Paul Ludlow, President, P&O Cruises during the virtual ceremony.
“It is a future which will include two of the most environmentally innovative ships in the world today,” he added.
Like Iona, and all the other Excel-class cruise ships being built for fellow Carnival-owned cruise lines, Arvia will be extremely energy efficient.
She will be powered by LNG, which is the cleanest burning fossil fuel in the world, reducing particles and emissions by up 90%, but will also feature engineering systems intended to reduce fuel usage, onboard energy demands and waste.
She is the seventh named ship in the Excel-class. Eight ships have been announced, with four delivered thus far for Costa Cruises (Costa Smeralda), AIDA Cruises (AIDAnova), P&O (Iona) and Carnival Cruise Line (Mardi Gras).
Another four ships under construction have been named (Costa Toscana, AIDAcosma, Carnival Celebration and Arvia). One more ship is on the orderbook for AIDA, but nothing has been announced beyond the fact that she’s due for delivery in 2023.
Ludlow said that Arvia will have a “different look and feel” to Iona, but declined to provide any details about her dining, entertainment and accommodation spaces.
“It is one (DNA) which exemplifies design excellence, forward-thinking power generation and future-focused experiences,” he said.
“The hardware, technology and interior arrangement of spaces leave nothing lacking,” he added. “Every sheet of metal, every control panel, every cabin, light fitting and chair has been designed and debated to ensure that it provides a pinnacle holiday for our guests and the foremost working and living experience for our crew.”
Arvia will be delivered in December 2022, and holidays on it will go on sale in March.
Iona features 17 guest decks, eight specialty restaurants, 13 entertainment venues, four swimming pools (including a spectacular infinity pool at the aft of the ship) and 16 whirlpools.